Illinois governor Pat Quinn has declared ten of the counties in his state disaster areas after heavy thunderstorms moved into the area and dumped heavy amounts of rain. Westchester and Cicero – two west Chicago suburbs were the hardest hit as was a Chicago highrise apartment complex along the Chicago River when approximately seven inches of rain quickly feel on the northern portion of Illinois Friday night into Saturday.
Quinn said that many of his state residents are reeling from the damage. He also stated that over 125,000 sand bags have been sent to folks in Henderson County. Illinois residents who were affected by the widespread flooding are being told that they can find an online flood cleanup guide online that was posted by the American Red Cross.
The severe storms that hit the Windy City over the weekend flooded streets, filled viaducts and sent rain seeping into tunnels across the city. In Westchester and Cicero, many homeowners reported waist deep water in their homes while others reported having up to ten feet of standing water to deal with. Westchester officials are holding a special meeting Tuesday (July 27) at 6 p.m. to declare an official state of emergency for the badly affected village. The Red Cross provided residents there with a dry place to sleep, rest and eat. There were flood damage assessment vans and trucks seen throughout many of the flood ravaged areas on Sunday, as residents are trying to come to grips with what has happened and to begin the cleanup process as quickly as possible.
The City of Chicago is thankful for their local chapter of the Red Cross as it is beginning to distribute clean-up kits which contain brooms, rubber gloves, mops as well as cleaning and disinfectant solutions at no cost to those in need. Officials in Westchester are warning its residents to be aware of scam artists that show up during times of disaster. People who may be posing as relief workers or repair companies could very well arrive on the scene and take advantage of vulnerable and tired residents. They also mentioned that no one should pay anyone up front and that any work promised to be done should be put in writing in the form of a formal contract. The topic is to be discussed at this evening’s meeting.
Chicagoland’s weather forecast is not all that promising following the recent storma as another line of thunderstorms may move into the area on Wednesday and then again over the coming weekend. Affected residents all across northern and central Illinois are being urged to take great caution when working in or near flood water as there are many hidden dangers that should be taken very seriously.